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Diesel Power
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This a write up from http://www.channel4.com/apps26/4car/jsp/main.jsp?lnk=220&pageid=5363


No Compromises
Farah Alkhalisi


Diesel coupés have been seen as a way of getting in a car with a sporting image or sleek appearance whilst enjoying lower running costs and improved fuel economy. A bit of a compromise when you think of the Peugeot 406 HDI Coupe or Mercedes CLK 270 CDI - they're both very pleasant, but wouldn't you prefer their petrol counterparts? BMW's 330Cd, however, is the most appealing combination of coupé bodystyling and diesel power we've tested so far, and a model highly desirable as a performance car in its own right.

BMW's 3.0-litre, six-cylinder engine made a solid impact in the 730d, 530d and 330d saloons and Touring estates, and the engine has generally been hailed as the best performance diesel ever produced. It has now been boosted for 2003 to 204bhp (an extra 20bhp) and 302lb ft/410Nm of torque, or pulling muscle, (up 5 percent), and has shed a little weight. It features second-generation common-rail fuel-injection technology, which pushes fuel into the cylinders even more quickly at higher pressures, and enhanced combustion efficiency for higher power output and lower fuel consumption (now 42.8mpg on the combined cycle).

Fuel can be injected into the cylinders up to four times per operating cycle, meaning smoother running and reduced particle emissions, and new combustion chamber geometry and an extra 68cc of capacity optimise the fuel/air mixture. Other developments include more a responsive turbo turbine and compressor, and a more efficient intercooler, which help the smoothness of performance from start-up and when pulling away. A new engine management system with rapid-heating technology helps ignition in cold temperatures. Add to all this the now-standard six-speed manual gearbox, and BMW's powertrain is a pretty appealing, state-of-the-art package. Hell, with carbon-dioxide output of just 177g/km, the 330Cd even makes sense as a low-tax company car, if there are no radical changes in the BIK system before it finally goes on sale in a year's time.

It's all very well admiring the spec of an engine, but the car it goes in is rather important too. Thankfully, the 3-Series coupé bodystyle has undergone a minor M3-influenced makeover designed to distinguish it further from the ever more mainstream (and now rather common) 3-Series saloon. The latest incarnation looks a little more aggressive, lower-slung and more of a serious driver's car, rather than a posing machine. BMW's trademark kidney-shaped grille is slightly wider, sitting between integrated one-piece clear-lensed headlights, which are distinct from the twin cut-out circles of the Compact. There is a subtle power bulge in the bonnet, front fog lights are now standard and the side profile slightly revised too. At the tail end are new LED lamps, which are more durable and quicker to react than traditional bulbs. These have a dual-stage illumination function in cars for the US market, the brake lights illuminating more intensely under hard or emergency braking, but this technology hasn't been homologated for Europe yet. Options for the range will include Park Distance Control and adaptive headlights - the latter are bi-xenon modular units which respond to input from sensors on the steering angle, speed and yaw rate, and swivel by up to 15 degrees either way to shine extra light around a bend. Other new electronic gadgetry includes third-generation DSC (Dynamic Stability Control), DVD-equipped navigation and a Bluetooth interface for in-car telecommunications. It's a case of up-speccing all round.






Have faith
Farah Alkhalisi


Although the styling and minor detailing may have been tweaked, thankfully BMW has resisted the temptation to play around with the driving dynamics. The 3-Series Coupé and Convertible models feel as solid and secure yet as responsive and intuitive as they ever did, and even with the full armoury of electronic driving aids to stop you getting over-ambitious, the sheer quality and class of the chassis engineering shines through.

You can overlook the slightly cheap-feeling grey plastics in the cabin, and the somewhat tacky brushed-aluminium-effect trim - who's looking at the facia when there's bends to steer round, anyway? Those bends get easier in the dark, too, with the adaptive headlights fitted. Don't expect every blind corner to be illuminated perfectly as far as the eye can see, but the difference is noticeable, more in terms of breadth than long-distance range, and they're well worth specifying if you like to go for nocturnal blasts.

Less of an obvious gain is the six-speed gearbox. The sixth is essentially just a tall overdrive gear, for improved economy at high autobahn speeds, and the lower gears are widely spaced. On first feel, the large gap between second and third seems too high for rapid hill-climbing. If you were driving a petrol-engined car, you might expect to downshift when approaching a steep, inclining corner, for instance. But the 330Cd forces you to unlearn these habits - and stay in third or even fourth gear throughout the climb. Once you have faith in the engine's massive strength throughout the rev range, BMW's gear spacing all makes perfect sense. However, a shorter-throw gearshift action would be appropriate, if not crucial to enjoyment.

And with the superb 330d engine, which is creamy yet beautifully bombastic when you want it to be, the 330Cd is possibly the optimum choice for keen, yet comfort-seeking, drivers in this class. Call it a more civilized (and cheaper) real-world alternative to an M3, perhaps - it really is that good to drive, and the engine sounds fantastic, with a roar from the exhaust and a whistle from the turbo wastegate, just like a petrol performance car. The two cars may be very different in character and intention, but opting for the diesel doesn't mean going short on entertainment. In fact, it means more all-round ability, and even if would-be M3 buyers aren't tempted, the 330Cd makes the agile, flexible 330Ci look an altogether less accomplished all-rounder. It really is that good.

Specifications: BMW 330Cd
Price: £28,500 (estimated)
Engine: 3.0-litre, six in-line cylinders
Max power: 204bhp at 4000rpm
Max torque: 302lb ft at 1500-3250rpm
Max speed: 150mph
0-60 acceleration: 7.2 seconds
Fuel economy (combined): 42.8mpg
Carbon-dioxide emissions: 177g/km











 

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BMW Land Barge
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Re: Re: Diesel Lovers:BMW 3-Series 330Cd

zerofighter said:


is that torque figure right? otherwise it has mad torque coming of of its a$$
That's correct. *drool*

This thing will probably be even more monstrous when they figure out how to chiptune it. I would LOVE to get a 330dT next time around.
 

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Re: Re: Re: Diesel Lovers:BMW 3-Series 330Cd

Nick325xiT 5spd said:


That's correct. *drool*

This thing will probably be even more monstrous when they figure out how to chiptune it. I would LOVE to get a 330dT next time around.
I remember a company had a chip for the 330d, boosted torque to around 400.
 

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Diesel Power
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Call it a more civilized (and cheaper) real-world alternative to an M3, perhaps - it really is that good to drive, and the engine sounds fantastic, with a roar from the exhaust and a whistle from the turbo wastegate, just like a petrol performance car.

The writer is even comparing it with an M3, that is a bit far fetched, don't you think?

Sorry about my sig ( not really), I really sort of like it!
 

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a torque of 400 Nm... I am sure when you put it next to an M3, it could keep up the first couple of meters ...
 

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Diesel Power
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Hans_ACS said:
a torque of 400 Nm... I am sure when you put it next to an M3, it could keep up the first couple of meters ...

WOW.....:dunno:
 

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Sweet! First facelift pics I liked so far. Its making me wanna paint my moldings now. Wonder how fuel-efficent that diesel is.

Bart
 

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moderation in all things
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but where to put the gruppeM...

:D
 

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Re: Re: Diesel Lovers:BMW 3-Series 330Cd

zerofighter said:


is that torque figure right? otherwise it has mad torque coming of of its a$$
yups, desiel cars are known for their crazy torque. :D
 

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a chip on that thing will get it to at LEAST 250bhp and around 520nm of torque, that is the least out of a chip, now imagine chip intake/exaust only you'v got urself a B*TCH!
 
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